Bangladesh Nationalist Party on Wednesday held demonstrations, amid police action at places, to protest against issuance of arrest warrant against the party chairperson, Khaleda Zia.
The party alleged that about 170 leaders and activists of BNP and its front and associate organisations were arrested and over 200 injured in joint action of police and ruling party ‘goons’ in different parts of the country on Tuesday and Wednesday during demonstrations.
BNP announced the protests in districts and metropolitan cities across the country for Wednesday while Juba Dal and Swechchhasebak Dal announced demo for Tuesday. Chhatra Dal announced demonstration for Tuesday and Wednesday.
A Comilla court on Monday issued a warrant for arrest of Khaleda Zia and others in a case of arson that left eight people killed in February 2015 during a
countrywide non-stop transport blockade.
BNP senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi at a news briefing at the party central office alleged that law enforcers and the ruling party’s ‘goons’ unleashed attacks, opened fire and charge baton on the party’s demonstrations in the last two days in the different parts of the country including in the capital, Chittagong, Rajshahi, Noakhali, Lakshipur, Gaibandha, Barisal, Keraniganj, Narayanganj and Sylhet.
He claimed that police started countrywide mass arrest of opposition leaders and activists including BNP and its front and associate organisations.
Rizvi said police along with the ruling party activists vandalised BNP offices in different districts as well as raided and attacked the houses of the party leaders and activists.
He said the unelected government at the end of its tenure was directionless.
Rizvi said police opened fire on BNP procession led by the party central vice-chairman Mohammad Shahjahan in Noakhali on Wednesday.
Several leaders and activists were injured by bullets while three leaders of the party were arrested.
Our Noakhali correspondent reported that police on Wednesday obstructed demonstration of BNP, leaving at least 30 leaders and activists injured in clashes with police in the district town.
The hour-long clash started in Rashid Colony area around 11:00am as police intercepted a procession triggering an altercation with BNP activists.
At one stage, the BNP activists pelted bricks at police and vandalised a vehicle of the law enforcers.
According to New Age Gaibandha correspondent, police dispersed a BNP procession brought out from its office by firing teargas shells and charging baton.
At least 10 people including journalists were injured in police action. Police picked up a person from the spot.
Our Magura correspondent reported that BNP and Awami League-backed youth wing Juba League brought out processions.
Police obstructed BNP’s procession that was brought out from Judge Court Para. Later the party leaders and activists held a rally there.
Juba League brought out a ‘joy’ rally in the town welcoming prime minister Sheikh Hasina.
New Age Barisal correspondent reported that police foiled processions of Barisal district north, south and city units of BNP.
The three units jointly held a protest meeting in front of the Ashwini Kumar Hall.
After the protest meeting, the leaders and activists tried to bring out procession but police obstructed them, leading to a scuffle.
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